Using Science to Promote Better Regulation of Tobacco Products

vape devices

The American Heart Association has been at the forefront of decades of work to reduce tobacco use in the United States. But too many people are still smoking, vaping and using other forms of tobacco. The AHA believes it is important to fully understand the health risks and set standards for tobacco product regulation that will protect public health.

The AHA Tobacco Regulation and Addiction Center™ (A-TRAC) is a virtual research center that brings together leading academic institutions to increase scientific knowledge about tobacco use.

Working Together for Science

In 2013, the U.S. Food and Drug Administration and the National Institutes of Health awarded grants to create 14 Tobacco Centers of Regulatory Science across the nation. As one of the grant recipients, the American Heart Association created A-TRAC. The AHA’s center works closely with the other centers to achieve established research goals and inform tobacco product regulation.

A-TRAC’s primary areas of focus include:

  • To identify biomarkers (measurable indicators in the body) of cardiovascular injury and disease risk associated with the use of tobacco products
  • To identify the harmful parts of these products 
  • To find new markers and develop new methods that will reveal tobacco-related harm earlier
  • To design effective communication methods for changing views about tobacco use in minority and vulnerable populations
  • To measure the toxicity of chemicals and flavor compounds in electronic cigarettes (e-cigs)
  • To measure the health effects of tobacco exposure

A-TRAC will continue to shed light on these and other important issues to reduce smoking and tobacco use. Because when it comes to being healthy for good, knowledge is power!

AHA Tobacco Regulation and Addiction Center, Professional Heart Daily website